Chase Jr, Levi R., MAJ

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Last Rank
Last Service Branch
Last Primary MOS
AAF MOS 1056-Pilot, Single-Engine Fighter
Last MOS Group
Aviation (Officer)
Primary Unit
1951-1973, US Air Force
Service Years
1940 - 1946



Six Overseas Service Bars

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

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Home State
New York
New York
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by the Site Administrator to remember Chase Jr, Levi R. (WW II Fighter Ace), MAJ.
Contact Info
Home Town
Courtland, New York
Last Address
Not Specified

Date of Passing
Sep 04, 1994
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

Honorably Discharged WW II Meritorious Unit Commendation 1944-1961

 Unofficial Badges 

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
Assigned to the 58th Fighter Squadron, 33rd Fighter Group, flying P-40s, Chase had his first taste of combat during the invasion of North Africa in November 1942. Newly promoted to captain, he scored two kills flying with the 58th - his first a Messerschmitt 109 on 18 December and a JU-88 four days later. Later, as commander of the 60th Fighter Squadron, then-Major Chase continued to run up his score, downing seven BF-109's and a Macchi 202 between 31 January and 5 April, 1943 Flying P-40's he downed 10 Axis planes in the MTO. The 33rd Fighter Group, also known as the "The Fighting Nomads." However, because of the tactics they were forced adopt to deal with superior Luftwaffe forces, parts of the unit became known as the "Red Scarf Guerillas." The group gained notoriety also for being led for a time by Phil Cochran, who served as the prototype hero for the "Terry and the Pirates" comic strip. Cochran dubbed Chase his "One-Man Wave of Terror" for his aggressive and relentless pursuit and attack of enemy targets.
He planned and led one of the longest (if not the longest) raids of WWII by fighter aircraft. Flying P-51 Mustangs from their base at Cox's Bazaar in India, the two squadrons of the 2nd Air Commando struck at Don Muang Airfield north of Bangkok for the first time on March 15, 1945. The raid covered over 1,500 miles (2413 km) round trip. The mission called for precise navigation and fuel management, but accomplished the task of deep penetration to strike at what were supposed to be secure rear staging areas for the remnants of the Japanese Air Force in the China-Burma-India theatre. The details of the raid and the Counter-Air campaign of the 2nd Air Commandos appear in the Spring 1994 issue of Air Enthusiast Magazine by Edward Young. The fighter squadrons of the 2nd Air Commandos received a Distinguished Unit Citation for the raids on Don Muang Field and Major Chase was awarded the Silver Star for his role in planning and leading the mission.

He was interred in Cortland Rural Cemetery, Cortland, New York
Other Comments:
Levi Chase flew with three different fighter squadrons in WWII, shooting down a total of 12 enemy aircraft to become a Double ACE. Flying in North Africa and the China, Burma, India Theater, he is the only American pilot to shoot down aircraft from THREE Axis powers during the war. He also flew during both the Korean and Vietnam Wars, and retired in 1973 as a Major General in the U.S. Air Force.


Silver Star

Awarded for actions during the Korean War

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting a Second Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster in lieu of a Third Award of the Silver Star to Colonel Levi R. Chase, United States Air Force, for gallantry in action against an armed enemy of the United Nations as Commanding Officer, 8th Fighter Bomber Group, on 11 July 1952. Knowing that the defense of the target area consisted of fifty-two heavy guns, sixteen of which were radar controlled, sixteen four-gun batteries of automatic weapons and an undetermined amount of intense small arms fire, Colonel Chase led the 8th Fighter bomber Group on three highly successful missions into this heavily defended area at Pyongyang, Korea. Colonel Chase so effectively planned the attack and employed evasive tactics that he led one hundred and eighty-one effective combat sorties through the intense enemy barrage without major damage or the loss of a single aircraft. This series of devastating attacks completely destroyed a vital communications and ordnance manufacturing plant, and inflicted major damage on a roundhouse and a locomotive repair plant. Through his outstanding courage, leadership, and professional skill, Colonel Chase was instrumental in reducing the war potential of the enemy, and reflected great credit upon himself, the Far East Air Forces, and the United States Air Force.

Action Date: 11-Jul-52

Service: Air Force

Rank: Colonel

Company: Commanding Officer

Battalion: 8th Fighter Bomber Group






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USAAF 12th Army Air ForceUSAAF 3rd Army Air ForceChina-Burma-India (CBI)US Air Force
  1942-1943, AAF MOS 1056, USAAF 12th Army Air Force
  1943-1944, AAF MOS 1056, USAAF 3rd Army Air Force
  1944-1945, AAF MOS 1056, CBI Air Groups/Squadrons
  1951-1973, US Air Force
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